Stop and Yield Control Signs
Stop, all-way stop, and yield signs are applicable to lower-volume urban intersections. They should always be implemented in a way that promotes safe pedestrian crossing. If signs alone are insufficient to create safe crossings, consider geometric measures before signalizing the crossing.
Speed-limit signs are applicable to all urban streets, reiterating overall citywide speed limits as well as specific permissible speeds for shared spaces, laneways, or other slow zones.
Curbside signs communicate rules related to parking, loading zones, restricted access, and other curbside management strategies. In some jurisdictions, signs are legally required for enforceable cycle lanes, transit stops, or transit lanes. Use overhead signs only on multilane streets.
Signals work in tandem with geometric design to create a highly functional multimodal street with safe crossings and intersections. Signal timing influences delay, compliance, speed, and mode choice.
Fixed signal phasing is preferable in urban areas, providing predictability and consistent opportunities to cross streets. Actuated signals and beacons are applicable where pedestrian volume is very low and speed management is not sufficient to create safe crossings.
Signal timing should be managed differently at peak and off-peak times, adjusted to meet different levels of modal activity and different goals throughout the day. See: Design Hour.
Signals should not be considered in isolation, but rather as a system of intersections. Coordinating the timing of crossing corridors is a challenging but high-value traffic management process.
Traffic signal timing with insufficient time for pedestrians to cross a street or long signal cycles that increase waiting times are likely to create an unpleasant or unsafe street, and may discourage walking. Significant delays may cause street users to ignore the traffic signal.
Signal progressions, or green waves, determine the pace of urban streets. Coordinated signal timing synchronizes traffic movements along a corridor and manages the progression speed. A progression speed based on realistic transit and cycle travel speeds, usually in the range of 20-30 km/h, optimizes cycle and transit movements and removes much of the incentive for vehicles to speed. Depending on block length, this progression speed may also synchronize with walking speeds, typically 1 –1.5 m/s.